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3:50 PM ET, March 19, 2009

memeorandum

 Top Items: 
Manu Raju / The Politico:
GOP wary of plan to tax AIG bonuses  —  A plan to recoup millions of dollars of American International Group bonuses by taxing them into oblivion has put top Republicans on opposite sides of a riddle: When is a tax hike not a tax hike?  —  House Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) …
RELATED:
Stephen Ohlemacher / Associated Press:
House passes bill taxing AIG and other bonuses  —  Featured Topics: - Barack Obama - Presidential Transition  —  WASHINGTON - The Democratic-led House overwhelmingly approved a bill on Thursday to slap punishing taxes on big employee bonuses from AIG and other firms bailed out by taxpayers.
Washington Post:
How the Fed Failed to Tell Obama About The Bonuses  —  Federal Reserve officials knew for months about bonuses at American International Group but failed to tell the Obama administration, according to government and company officials, exposing problems in a relationship that is vital to addressing the financial crisis.
Tom Maguire / JustOneMinute:
No New Taxes  —  I deplore this confiscatory tax aimed at whoever Congress is mad at today.  Right now it's AIG and Fannie Mae; later it will be Merrill and Citibank, and eventually it will be defense contractors, profiteering oil executives, or whomever the Congressional Dems single out as their whipping boy du jour.
Discussion: Wall Street Journal
David Stout / New York Times:   House Passes Bill to Punish A.I.G. Bonus Recipients
Michelle Malkin:   Putting on a great show: Kabuki in the House; Update: 328-93 …
Stephen Ohlemacher / Associated Press:
13 firms receiving federal bailout owe back taxes  —  Featured Topics: - Barack Obama - Presidential Transition  —  WASHINGTON - At least 13 firms receiving billions of dollars in bailout money owe a total of more than $220 million in unpaid federal taxes, a key lawmaker said Thursday.
RELATED:
Jonathan D. Salant / Bloomberg:
AIG Bonuses Contemplated in '08, TARP Inspector Says
Discussion: Think Progress
Fox News:
Duke Coach to Obama: Worry About the Economy, Not NCAA Picks  —  Reacting to news Obama picked North Carolina to win the NCAA Championship, Mike Krzyzewski says, “the economy is something that [the president] should focus on, probably more than the brackets.”
RELATED:
Nate Silver / FiveThirtyEight:
Cherry-Picker-in-Chief
Discussion: Politicker NY and The Opinionator
Brady Dennis / Washington Post:
Inside AIG-FP, Feeling the Public's Wrath  —  A solitary flat-screen television hangs on the back wall of the trading floor inside the headquarters of AIG Financial Products here.  Wednesday afternoon, the most-talked-about employees in America huddled around it to find out just how despised they have become.
RELATED:
Gail Collins / New York Times:
The Grievance Committee  —  Angry.  So very, very angry.  Unable to speak due to mega-anger washing over every pore and fiber of my being.  Anger is in.  (Hope's so ... January.)  —  I am extremely angry at Tim Geithner for being such a baby that he couldn't scare a bunch …
Amos Harel / Haaretz:
IDF in Gaza: Killing civilians, vandalism, and lax rules of engagement  —  During Operation Cast Lead, Israeli forces killed Palestinian civilians under permissive rules of engagement and intentionally destroyed their property, say soldiers who fought in the offensive.
RELATED:
Isabel Kershner / New York Times:
Israeli Army to Investigate Gaza Shootings
Discussion: TPMCafe
Erik Schatzker / Bloomberg:
Citigroup Said to Commit $10 Million for New Executive Suite  —  Citigroup Inc. plans to spend about $10 million on new offices for Chief Executive Officer Vikram Pandit and his lieutenants, after the U.S. government injected $45 billion of cash into the bank.
Discussion: Swampland, TigerHawk and The XX Factor
Michelle Malkin:
Audio comedy gold: Bozo the Vice President is looking out for you  —  The gaffetastic gift that keeps on giving.  —  In trying times, we can always count on Bozo the Vice President to provide some welcome comic relief.  Joe Biden was The Newshour on PBS last night in full swagger …
Jared Allen / The Hill:
Pelosi: House Dems blameless in AIG scandal  —  House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) kicked blame for the insertion of a provision allowing for AIG bonuses to go forward to the White House and the Senate on Thursday morning, saying House Democrats bore no responsibility for the bonus language at the center of the AIG storm.
Discussion: protein wisdom
RELATED:
Eddie / Sky News:
Julia Alasheyeva, Moscow  —  A picture has emerged apparently showing Russia's Prime Minister Vladimir Putin in his former days as a KGB officer.  —  The 20-year old photo depicts two world leaders - US President Ronald Reagan and the Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev - in Moscow.
Ed Morrissey / Hot Air:
Sebelius has trouble in Kansas  —  And it's not a twister, Auntie Em.  Kathleen Sebelius left her job as governor of Kansas to take a Cabinet position as Secretary of Health and Human Services in Barack Obama's administration, but she left unfinished business behind.
RELATED:
David Klepper / Kansas City Star:   Kansas lawmakers question whether Johnson County nonprofit benefited …
Laura Rozen / The Cable:
Top brass disturbed by GOP stalling of Iraq ambassador  —  There's one as yet unremarked constituency increasingly disturbed by some Republican senators' efforts to block the confirmation of former North Korea envoy Christopher Hill to be the next U.S. ambassador to Iraq: the U.S. military.
Washington Times:
EXCLUSIVE: Obama's $500,000 book bonanza  —  Deal reached 5 days before he took office  —  As he empathized with recession-weary Americans, President Obama arranged in the days just before he took office to secure a $500,000 advance for a children's book project, a disclosure report shows.
Lindsey Ellerson / The Note:
Norquist Opposes AIG Tax, But Says It Doesn't Break Tax Pledge  —  ABC News' Z. Byron Wolf reports from Capitol Hill: While everyone seems to be outraged about the $165 million in bonuses awarded to AIG executives at the troubled financial products division, the plan by Democrats in the House …
Discussion: Firedoglake and TPMDC
James K. Galbraith / Associated Press:
No Return to Normal  —  Why the economic crisis, and its solution,  —  are bigger than you think.  —  B arack Obama's presidency began in hope and goodwill, but its test will be its success or failure on the economics.  Did the president and his team correctly diagnose the problem?
Hollywoodreporter / The Live Feed:
Networks reluctantly shuffle for Obama speech  —  Networks are pulling their shows over to the side of the road to make room for the lights and sirens of president Barack Obama's latest primetime address.  —  Obama will take to the air next Tuesday evening on four broadcast networks and bump …
Rolling Stone:
The 100 People Who Are Changing America  —  It would be a luxury if the function of the list we present here were simply to shake ourselves out of complacency.  But, unfortunately, we are far beyond that.  With the election of Barack Obama and the deep hole that his predecessor left …
Timothy J. Burger / Bloomberg:
California Congressman Calls Maryland Home to Gain Tax Credit  —  A senior member of the U.S. House's tax-writing Ways and Means Committee from California has been taking advantage of a tax break for a home in Maryland that he claims as his principal residence.
Dina Cappiello / Associated Press:
EPA reports uptick in some toxic chemicals in 2007  —  Featured Topics: - Barack Obama - Presidential Transition  —  WASHINGTON - The government is reporting that toxic chemical pollution from the nation's industrial plants and factories declined by 5 percent in 2007.
Associated Press:
US to attend Afghan meeting in Russia  —  Featured Topics: - Barack Obama - Presidential Transition  —  WASHINGTON - The Obama administration has accepted an invitation to attend a Russian-hosted conference on Afghanistan next week at which Iran is also expected to participate.
Discussion: Agence France Presse
 
 
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 More Items: 
CNN:
Western state repeals death penalty
Discussion: Open Left
Satyam Khanna / Think Progress:
Rice: 'No One Was Arguing That Saddam Hussein Somehow Had Something …
Discussion: Crooks and Liars and Daily Kos
Zachary A. Goldfarb / Washington Post:
Report Details Countrywide's Efforts to Benefit VIPs
Discussion: protein wisdom
Reliable Source:
Puppy Love at the Veep's House
Discussion: Political Punch
Jean-Marie Godard / Associated Press:
France hit by new wave of nationwide protests
Ed Morrissey / Hot Air:
Kundra back on job, White House dodging; Update: WH finally responds!
Discussion: Gawker and Silicon Alley Insider
Jimmy Orr / Christian Science Monitor:
Obama: It's like AIG has a bomb strapped to them
David Kurtz / Talking Points Memo:
NO IDEAS, NO PLAN, NO NOTHING
 Earlier Items: 
Belinda Luscombe / Time:
Arianna Huffington: The Web's New Oracle
Discussion: The Politico
Mark Silva / The Swamp:
Obama's Jay Leno: Humor or hubris?
Discussion: The Politico
Myglesias / Matthew Yglesias:
On the Bloated Defense Budget
Andrew Blankstein / Los Angeles Times:
Photo of Charles Manson is released by prison officials
Discussion: LA Observed